Transparency goes a long way: Wednesday’s Daily Brief

Plus FitBit's work management evolution and news from TikTok and Shopify.

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Good morning, Marketers, and do you ever just feel like a customer who wants to be delighted?

I prefer flipping the BOPIS model on big-ticket items. I like to consult a knowledgeable person in-store and inspect the merchandise, then have it delivered. In June, I closed the sale on a sofa at a major retailer and waited intently at my new place for it to arrive. I was warned that there were supply-chain issues for this model (they couldn’t sell me the exact sofa in the store), and the delivery might take until August. 

Now, I’ve been updated and the delivery is pushed back to October. They’ve been honest at every step without needlessly getting up my hopes. I can cancel the order at any time if I find something better I like. As of now, I’m delighted with the price, and delighted with filling out the rest of my space with other new smaller things that came, more or less, on time.

Transparency and updates go a long way in customer experience, provided that a service rep can access order information and updated customer data rapidly. That’s MarTech in action.

Chris Wood,


In-person conferences set back by Delta  

A new wave of caution for in-person gatherings is sweeping over marketers as the COVID-19 Delta variant is causing cases to spike, especially in areas with lower vaccination rates. Marketing professionals we surveyed this summer give it a 5 out of 10 chance, on average, that they will attend an in-person event through the end of 2021. 

The results showed a slight decrease in optimism compared to April, when respondents gave a 6 out of 10 chance, on average, that they would attend an in-person event in the fourth quarter of 2021.

The outlook improves slightly for 2022. Respondents on average gave it a 6 out of 10 likelihood that they would attend an in-person event in the first half of 2022. That jumped to 7 out of 10 for the second half of 2022. All of this suggests that the kind of attendance seen in conferences, trade shows and more before the pandemic will not return in the near future.

Many of our respondents commented on how the past 18 months have changed their views on professional training and networking. For many of them, virtual events expanded their access to actionable information. “While I love in-person events, I feel like I’ve attended more virtual events and training than I would have otherwise. It’s probably a combination of a reduced overall time commitment, and not having to pay for travel,” wrote one respondent.

But when it comes to networking, digital experiences miss the mark for many professionals, which is surprising in the age of social networking.

Read more here.

Fitbit’s connected workspace for marketers

Wearable technology company Fitbit was using Jira for project management and was looking to increase efficiency for future product cycles. After implementing the Wrike for Marketers solution, the marketing team reported slashing 400 hours of meeting time per year, and over 50% less time spent on project management because of the way it was intelligently automated.

The tool also connects international teams with the Fitbit headquarters on a centralized platform that supports WFH and hybrid work models. Fitbit has approximately 1,700 employees in 15 offices in the US and around the globe.

“I know those teams can often feel disconnected from the work that’s happening in the central office,” said Fitbit Director of Creative Operations Brynne Roberts. “[When] I send out weekly reports that share updates on launch progress, any team can scan them to see if they’re reflecting their needs and deadlines. It helps ensure no team gets left out.”

For marketing teams specifically, the review process can eat up a lot of meeting time.

Roberts explained the workflow efficiencies that came out of the solution: “We give stakeholders a certain amount of days to give their feedback. The lead stakeholder is responsible for vetting other stakeholders’ comments and determining what they agree with or not.”

She added, “From there, our internal team meets to review all the feedback saved in Wrike. The whole process helps us make sure everything is acknowledged and properly understood.”

Her team also saved over 200 hours spent tracking launch marketing materials using Wrike’s dynamic timelines tool.

Read more here.

TikTok teams up with Spotify to ignite social commerce

Tiktok and Shopify have announced TikTok Shopping, making Shopify the first commerce platform to link with the rapidly growing social video network. This partnership boosts the social commerce landscape, a market projected to bring in up to $36 billion in revenue this year in the U.S. alone.

The new in-app shopping experience will let Shopify merchants connect with their TikTok profiles to create a mini-storefront for consumers.

Product links in TikTok Shopping will also be available to tag products in organic TikTok posts, enabling any video watcher to shop directly from the platform.

Why we care. Shopify is an ecommerce platform to watch in the evolving social commerce space. In order to meet customers where they are, digital marketers are trying to close the distance between social content and buying. Social media platforms like TikTok are where consumers are exposed to new products through discovery and “authentic” pitches by influencers. The TikTok Shopping experience will allow marketers to close the gap even further on a platform with hundreds of millions of active users.

Shopify also claims that between February 2020 and February 2021, installs across Shopify’s existing social commerce channels increased by 76%. With the pandemic challenges persisting and no “old normal” in sight, social commerce will continue to be a driver of growth essential to any marketer’s playbook for the foreseeable future.

Read more here.

About the author

Chris Wood
Chris Wood draws on over 15 years of reporting experience as a B2B editor and journalist. At DMN, he served as associate editor, offering original analysis on the evolving marketing tech landscape. He has interviewed leaders in tech and policy, from Canva CEO Melanie Perkins, to former Cisco CEO John Chambers, and Vivek Kundra, appointed by Barack Obama as the country's first federal CIO. He is especially interested in how new technologies, including voice and blockchain, are disrupting the marketing world as we know it. In 2019, he moderated a panel on "innovation theater" at Fintech Inn, in Vilnius. In addition to his marketing-focused reporting in industry trades like Robotics Trends, Modern Brewery Age and AdNation News, Wood has also written for KIRKUS, and contributes fiction, criticism and poetry to several leading book blogs. He studied English at Fairfield University, and was born in Springfield, Massachusetts. He lives in New York.

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